ALBANY, NY (AP) – Nearly a month after election day, a county in New York on Tuesday said it had discovered a small batch of countless ballots that could potentially shake one of the country’s next battles for a congressional seat. .
Chenango County informed the state judge that it discovered 55 votes in the state’s early voting period, in the ultra-tight contest, between U.S. MP Anthony Brindisi, a Democrat and Republican challenger, former U.S. MP Claudia Tenney.
“These votes were obviously misleading and never counted,” Alan Gordon, Chenango County attorney Scott DelConte, wrote to the Supreme Court.
The countless ballot papers were discovered in a rural county of about 47,000 inhabitants a day after local election officials in the 22nd Congressional District reported to the judge the aggregation of the alleged final votes. These summaries, which did not include the newly discovered ballot papers, showed Tenney 12 votes ahead.
“I advised our Electoral Board not to open these ballots and secure them in their offices,” Gordon said, adding that he was awaiting the court’s instructions on what to do next.
He said 11 of the 55 ballots appear to have been cast by unregistered voters.
The outcome of the contest will not be known until DelConte decides on the challenges of the more than 2,000 controversial missing and statement ballots submitted to the contest.
The discovery of countless ballots is the latest turn in the race’s roller coaster. Tenney led by thousands of votes on election day, but his leadership evaporated when the votes of those absent were counted.
Brindisi appeared to have led a few votes last week, only to lose its advantage last weekend after two counties reported tabular errors.
County election councils faced a Nov. 28 deadline to send official results to the state, but DelConte blocked certification while vote-counting disputes are resolved.
Elsewhere in New York, electoral bodies have also been slow to finalize their vote counts.
New York City only released information on the number of missing votes on Tuesday.
The city’s official table confirmed that Republican Nicole Malliotakis overthrew first-time U.S. MP Max Rose, a Democrat who represents a congressional district that includes Staten Island and part of Brooklyn.
Rose acknowledged the contest on Nov. 12, but the Associated Press only declared Malliotaki the winner on Tuesday, as there was no information on the large number of missing ballots before.
If Tenney finally prevails, she and Malliotakis would be made up of two Republican women who would oust the first-seat Democrats in office, both men, in parts of the state where President Donald Trump remains popular with the majority of voters.
This story was corrected to show that Chenango County told a state judge that it had discovered 55 ballots not on Monday but on Tuesday.